The Fuji X Pro 1 – User review
Who is this camera for. It is not for everyone. This camera is for the experienced photographer who is looking for a very high quality piece of equipment who likes to think about a shot or work slow. It is also great for the street and event photographer who wants to remain more discreet.
Budget well for this camera. The body is about $1700.00and each of the three lenses are in the $600.00 range.
The Fuji X Pro 1 is an interesting camera that Fuji has developed based on rangefinder cameras. It has the persona of a Leica camera but it is not a Leica and does not work like a Leica. Leica is Leica and any resemblance is simply a coincidence.
The Fuji is an electronic camera that translates data from the lens which appears to work mechanically via electronic signal like most other digital cameras that are out there.
It is the first camera however that allows the user of either its electronic viewfinder as an optical viewfinder with the push of a switch on the front of the body. Both finders are a pleasure to use depending upon the type of shooting that you are doing. It of course has a very nice LCD screen on the back of the camera. The built in viewfinder also has a switching device so that when the camera is brought to the users eye the body LCD shuts off and the viewfinder turns on.
The cameras build is solid.
The camera is very quiet which makes it great for street photography. The controls are easy to operate because the shutter speed dial is on the top right of the camera as is the under and exposure dial. Yes I said dials. on the top of the camera has the persona of a manual operating rangefinder camera from days of old. The lenses have real f stops operated by a ring around the back of the lens with accurate depth of field information in the view finder. It is a pleasure to use.
The back of the camera is laid out in digital fashion and has a quick menu that saves a great deal of time in making creative changes. The menu system is well laid out and like with all other camera digital cameras a little bit of study will help you master them.
The images that the camera produces are exceptionally sharp. The new sensor design which does not use an anti aliasing filter helps with that. The colors are very natural and clean and the high iso ability up to about 4000 are exceptional. The Jpeg files, like those of the Olympus cameras are superb out of the camera and many users are saying that they do not need a raw file. I would have to disagree with that. Not that the images as Jpegs are not wonderful, but a properly processed Raw file will always be better.
Things that might concern a user-
Autofocus is not as fast as most dSLR cameras. It is very accurate and for most people it will be more than sufficient.
60mm macro is extremely sharp, but very slow to achieve focus
Battery life is good for about 200 to 250 shots
There are no raw processors to date that can properly handle this cameras raw files.
I like this camera a lot and it is a pleasure to use for specific types of photography. It is the kind of camera that has exacting manual controls and composition with a range finder styled camera is different than composing with a dSLR type camera. It is a camera that one takes their time with.
What is also different about the Fuji is the appearance of a very film like image in regards to a grain structure. Not noise. A film like look created by the new sensor design. It is this sensor design that companies like Adobe are having difficulty writing for in regards to sorting out raw images.
Roel.com who has worked with Fuji on this camera has produced a set of ideas based on his personal experiences.
Below are processing guides for processing raw files that another Fuji X Pro 1 user has recommended. I have used them with Lightroom 4.1 and found them effective if not perfect.
SHARPENING TAB AMOUNT 50 RADIUS 0.6 DETAIL 50
BASIC TAB CLARITY +10
I have seen another post that recommended:
SHARPENING TAB AMOUNT 80 RADIUS 0.6 DETAIL 8 NOISE REDUCTION COLOR 28 COLOR DETAIL 50